Why Many Graduates Chose to Go to Montgomery College

Nearly half of the class of 2013 graduates, 49 percent, attended a four-year college while 28 percent opted for a two-year college.

Many of these students attend Montgomery College (MC), a two-year school. At MC, students are able to receive their associate’s degree; at a four-year college, students can receive a bachelor’s degree. However, community college students may choose to continue on to receive their bachelor’s degrees at another college.

“When you’re starting out with an associate degree, nine times out of ten you still have to go on to get that bachelor’s degree,” College and Career Coordinator Janet Harris said. “The more you have on your belt, the better your chances are out there in the real world.”

Another factor that comes into play when students decide whether to attend a four-year college is finance. Although classes can be cheaper at MC than they would be at a four-year school, students have to take into account the price of tuition, which is around $5,000, and travel costs.

“In the long run when all the money is added up, you may end up paying more at the two-year school,” Harris said.

Sometimes students end up at community college because their grades are not good enough to attend a university. Harris said, “Dreams [of attending a 4-year college] are dampered because of grades and scores a�� students don’t realize that you have to start out in ninth grade.” When applying to MC, students must take Accuplacer assessments to be placed into certain classes, but anyone is allowed to attend, regardless of their GPA or SAT/ACT scores.

Another factor that students consider when deciding which college to attend is the distance from home. Assistant Principal Galit Zolkower said, “For some students, two-year school is a much better way to begin and is an opportunity to stay close to home.” This allows students to gain experience with college-level work without being in a new environment.

Other students may get into their dream school, but for second semester. Alumnus Alexis Frager said, “I plan to work at Disney World this spring at their college program a�� my first semester at MC gives me credit.” Frager also got the opportunity to participate in MC’s soccer program, which is nationally ranked.

MC helps some students adapt to college. Alumnus Amber Durham said, “I chose MC to see if I was college ready.” Whether it is for economic or educational purposes, attending MC can be a viable option.

The number of students attending two-year college remained the same between the classes of 2013 and 2012. In addition to attending community college, other post-graduation options include heading straight into the workforce, as 2 percent of class of 2013 graduates did, or going into the military, as 3 percent did.